Tags: Digestive Problems | probiotics | stds | sexually transmitted diseases

STDs and Probiotics: Is There a Hidden Link?

By    |   Wednesday, 30 December 2015 07:40 PM

Since probiotics have shown to benefit the immune system, they may be helpful in preventing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

One study, study published in the September/October issue of mBio, injected participants with the bacteria Haemophilus ducreyi, which causes the STD chancroid as well as skin ulcers. The results showed that those who cleared the infection without medical assistance had similar microorganisms on their skin.

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"The researchers say that if the skin microbiome actually protects against H. ducreyi, then researchers could try using a probiotic cocktail as a therapy," mBio said. "This is speculative and you would have to test it, but it is an interesting idea," Dr. Stanley Spinola professor and chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, told the publication.

Probiotics are healthy bacteria in the body. Most are found in the gastrointestinal tract and protect the immune system by preventing bad bacteria from making tears in the intestinal lining, allowing toxins to enter the bloodstream.

After the study with chancroid, mBio did note that more data is needed to understand which
microorganisms in particular the participants had in common and their associated gene.

The National Center for Biotechnology Information notes women have a significant risk of obtaining HIV and sexually transmitted infections. Genital mucosa is the vehicle for contracting the disease, and a probiotic may help with treating and blocking such sexually transmitted diseases by secreting hydrogen peroxide and other substances.

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Livestrong reports one study done on mice showed that those injected with herpes and given probiotics experienced greater longevity than those who did not take probiotics.

Penn State Hershey’s medical center states probiotics can help restore the balance of bacteria in the intestines and be helpful in counteracting antibiotics taken to treat STDs. It especially recommends probiotics with Lactobacillus acidophilus that is taken daily. The medical center suggests refrigerating the probiotics for better results.

Penn State Hershey also notes patients with an autoimmune disease, those who are taking immunosuppressants, and people who have weakened immune systems should speak with a doctor before taking probiotics.

The study of probiotics' effects on sexually transmitted diseases is still in very early phases. Probiotics are not a proven way to prevent transmission of STDs.

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Since probiotics have shown to benefit the immune system, they may be helpful in preventing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
probiotics, stds, sexually transmitted diseases
Wednesday, 30 December 2015 07:40 PM
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